Journal: Failure to Launch
8 October 2017
Most stories spend a considerable amount of effort attempting to properly portray their main theme. Speak it too outright, and it come off heavy-handed and preachy. Be too subtle and readers will walk away not knowing what to take away from the writing. What I’m going to say isn’t much of a story but a lesson: keep track of your shit. If you are doing long term travel, I’d recommend not keeping large sums of cash on you. Even if that’s something you have to do, do not under any circumstance, lose that money. This happened to me in North Carolina, and it has unfortunately forced me to come back to Ohio—my safety net. I got pretty far. I saw The Outer Banks and The Atlantic Ocean for the first time; I met some interesting people and some unfavorable ones; I got a taste of freedom. All in all, a learning experience.
I spent two days driving from eastern North Carolina to Ohio, sleeping at a rest area in interim. I cannot say much about the drive; honestly, I zoned out and retreated into my own world for those two days. I wallowed in a feeling of futility. That is until I reached Ohio. Once I got past the end of the Appalachian Mountains Range, all I could see was flat farm lands and distant tree lines. The sun began to set behind the wispy ever-present clouds. I saw a hot-air balloon lifting up beyond a highway exchange bridge. It was one of the few times I found beauty in Ohio scenery. I thought, “Maybe this will be alright. Maybe this will give me the chance to rebuild and retry and do better next time.” I’m trying to remain optimistic, but that didn’t keep me from nearly breaking into tears once I reached Dayton city limits. The sight of the skyline was a stark reminder of my own negligence and failure.
To be honest, this all happened a while ago. It took me a while to write about it. In part because sometimes it’s difficult to admit your own failures, but also because I’ve had to figure out where I’m living. I still don’t know completely. I have a temporary stay with a sibling but that won’t last forever. Car living isn’t an option during the upcoming Ohio Winter. I’ll figure something out.
Cheers to remaining optimistic in difficult times.
Photo: A free art gallery in the Riverside Art District in Asheville, NC